Fred Beck & Roger Dahlhjelm wanted to build a “Village” at the corner of 3rd & Fairfax in Las Angeles, where local farmers could sell their fresh fare. E.B. Gilmore agreed to give it a go. In July 1934, a dozen farmers and a few other merchants parked their trucks at the corner of 3rd & Fairfax and sold their fresh produce from the back of the trucks.
Farmers Market Grows
By October 1934, mere months after it opened, farmers and merchants, including restaurants, grocers and service providers, were moving into permanent stalls and the new Farmers Market was so popular that its founders staged a celebration, the first Fall Festival at Farmers Market.
The Heart of the Market: Grocers
While it grew to be a must-see destination for travelers from around the world, Farmers Market was always the favorite place for L.A. families to shop for groceries. These two housewives were clearly dazzled by the fresh produce selections at the Market.
We’ve Got Style
Over time, Farmers Market continued to grow. The structures, like this marvelous general store, were a part of modern Los Angeles and the Market always retained its own unique and quaint style, as this photo suggests.
All Grown Up
As the family car became preferred transportation in L.A., Farmers Market’s open spaces became parking lots. This is a glimpse of the past, an aerial photo capturing the cars of the time and the Market, all grown up.
The Clock Tower became an icon of the Farmers Market in 1948. Over the decades, it has become a worldwide symbol of food and fun. This photo of the first tower (which now sits atop Starbucks) features the iconic phrase “An Idea”, a humble nod to Fred Beck, Roger Dahlhjelm and the 18 original tenants who helped forever shape the corner of 3rd & Fairfax.
The idea of the Farmers Market spread like wild fire from there and have consistently grown in popularity all over the country. Here in the Shenandoah Valley on the Fields of Gold Farm Trail we have no a shortage of Farmers Markets to choose from. They are still considered one of the best places to go for connecting with your local farmers and neighbors and for the freshest and tastiest edibles around! For a full listing of our farmers markets click on the farmers market box on the home page. Happy shopping!